Macklemore has gotten himself entangled in Australia’s same-sex marriage debate... and he doesn’t have time for the haters.
The American rapper is slated to perform in Sydney on Sunday at the National Rugby League Grand Final, which might not seem like a reason for controversy. But Australia is currently in the midst of a “of a two-month postal ballot to gauge public opinion toward legalizing gay marriage;” one of Macklemore’s most famous songs, “Same Love,” is about tackling homophobia.
An issue arose on Wednesday when Australia’s former Prime Minister Tony Abbott tweeted that the sporting event should not be “politicised” by the LGBT-friendly song.
Abbott sent the tweet after spotting former rugby league player Tony Wall’s Change.org petition entitled, “Take LGBTIQ politics out of the NRL” which tried to stop the performance altogether.
Macklemore has since responded by telling Los Angeles Radio KPWR on Thursday that he wouldn’t change his song list.
“It’s interesting actually because I’m playing ‘Same Love’ and they’re going through right now trying to legalize same-sex marriage in Australia, so I’m getting a lot of tweets from angry, old white dudes in Australia,” Macklemore said.
Adding: “I think there was a petition today to ban me from playing. I’m gonna go harder.”
Australia’s attorney general, George Brandis, came to Macklemore’s defense saying that “Same Love” “is one of his most popular songs and for Mr Abbott and anyone else to say that it should be banned I think is a bizarre thing to say,” he told ABC TV. “I thought Mr Abbott believed in freedom of speech.”
And Abbott’s own daughter, Frances, defended Macklemore. Frances has been a huge supporter of same-sex marriage and recently starred in a video (below) for GetUp supporting marriage equality:
She also posted on Instagram, encouraging Macklmore to “go harder” in response to her father’s critique.
“I still remember the first time I heard this song. I was sitting in my car, about to get out and go to work ... but stopped and listened,” she wrote in her post. “And that same day I went and bought the album and kept it in my car and listened to it over and over again. I can’t think of a better song for all the hundreds and thousands of people to listen to on Saturday. This is what we need right now. Go harder @macklemore.”
The NRL told The Guardian that fans “would not expect anything less than a full-throated performance of ’Same Love.’”
“Macklemore was chosen as the grand final act because he is currently one of the top acts in the world,” a spokesman told the outlet.
In addition to “Same Love,” Macklemore’s performance at the NRL will also include the songs “Glorious” and “Downtown (featuring Eric Nally).”